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Fermat’s Room (15) + presentation by Julia Gog

Science on Screen

Fermat's Room

This Spanish thriller has maths at its core. Four strangers must fight against the clock to work out how they are connected and why someone seems to be trying to kill them.

Summoned to a remote warehouse by the enigmatic Fermat (Federico Luppi), four brilliant mathematicians are given pseudonyms – Galois (Alejo Sauras), Hilbert (Lluís Homar), Olivia (Elena Ballesteros) and Pascal (Santi Millán) – and tasked with solving highly complex numerical riddles. As the apparent strangers struggle to solve the puzzles and determine why they are there, the stakes get higher as the walls close in around them.

The viewer does not need any mathematical training to appreciate the intrigue but, at its heart, the film raises important questions about the value of a mathematical proof; would the world really be any different if we had the proof of the famous Riemann hypothesis, for example?

At this event, Professor Julia Gog (a very firmly applied mathematician) will give a light-hearted introduction to the world of pure mathematics and explain some of the background references in the film.

Spain 2007 Dirs Luis Piedrahita, Rodrigo Sopeña 89 min

Once the presentation has begun, late comers will be asked to wait in the Cinema 2&3 foyer and will only be permitted to enter the auditorium after the presentation.

Julia Gog is Professor of Mathematical Biology at the Department of Applied Mathematics and Theoretical Physics, University of Cambridge. She is also the David N. Moore Fellow of Queens' College, where she is the Director of Studies in Mathematics. Julia’s research applies mathematics to understand the dynamics of infectious disease, with a particular focus on influenza spread and evolution. Her recent work has included investigating how the 2009 influenza pandemic spread across the US, and the "BBC Pandemic!" - a public science project and TV programme, studying how people in the UK are connected and hence learning about how the next pandemic will spread.



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Barbican Cinema 2